You might have already sampled eggplant-based dishes like Eggplant parmesan, Baba ganoush, Bharta, and Moussaka. If you like this nightshade vegetable, good for you! It packs in quite a lot of nutrients, which are responsible for the immense benefits of eggplant. Unsurprisingly, it is called the “king of vegetables”.
The eggplant, which also goes by the Latin name of Solanum Melongena, is a close relative of vegetables like potatoes and tomatoes. It is quite a popular vegetable across the world and is known by various names like brinjal, guinea squash, and aubergine. It comes in a variety of colors, including white, green, yellow, reddish purple, and dark purple. The shape of an eggplant may vary from long and narrow, to oval and chunky.
Nutrients Responsible For The Major Benefits Of Eggplant
Here are some of the nutrients that make the eggplant such a healthy vegetable.
This is a potent antioxidant that fights off free radicals. Chlorogenic acid is anti-mutagenic i.e. it protects cells from turning cancerous. This antioxidant is also anti-LDL, which means that it has the ability to lower bad cholesterol. The eggplant also has antiviral properties, which enable the body to fight off viruses.
A 1998 study conducted at the Institute of Biology, Sao Paulo State University, Brazil, found that consuming eggplant juice helped reduce weight, cholesterol levels, and cholesterol content in the aorta.
Think twice before you throw away those eggplant peels. They contain Nasunin, a powerful antioxidant that has antiangiogenic properties.
According to a 2005 study published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, nasunin has the ability to prevent cancer cells from developing their own blood vessels and supply. This automatically inhibits the growth of cancer cells.
Nasunin is also considered brain food as it protects cell membranes from getting damaged and in turn prevents inflammation.
Fiber, Minerals, And Vitamins
The eggplant is a fiber-rich vegetable. About one cup of eggplant is made up of 11% fiber. This food is welcome news for people who have problems with bowel movement. It also provides protection from colon cancer.
Eggplant is high in vitamins A, B, C, and folate. These nutrients are important for maintaining good vision, brain health, and high levels of immunity. The eggplant is also rich in minerals such as potassium, calcium, magnesium, and phosphorous.
If you’re on a diet, the eggplant is an excellent food to add to your menu. You’ll be relieved to know that eggplant has no fat and is very low in calories. One cup of eggplant contains only 27 calories.
Bake the eggplant, roast it, or make a pickle out of it. Just ensure that you eat it on a regular basis in some form. After all, it is an easy and excellent way to get all the nutrients your body needs!